As the weather begins to warm and we start to transition from winter into spring summer, you’ll notice your dogs coat will begin to change along with the season. At this time, the winter coat will begin to shed allowing the summer coat to come through. As you begin to notice this change it’s a good idea to try to remember to groom your dog helping the winter coat to shed. We have a range of different combs to do this, although we would highly recommend the FURminator which is specifically designed to take out the under coat of the dog.
Don’t forget to know your breed when considering this. For example some terriers such as a border terrier require hand stripping.
As we move into the new year, in this country our “cold snap” tends to arrive in the coming months. When feeding the birds bear this in mind:
With the harsh freezing conditions, birds will burn a lot more energy keeping warm. A great way to help them is to put out fat blocks which are a fantastic source of energy for them. Also during this time, the ground can freeze making it harder for birds to feed, so filling up your bird feeders or scattering some feed on the ground is a great way to help them. Dried meal worms, high energy feed, sunflower hearts etc. are all great feeds to be getting out for them.
Christmas is fast approaching and as exciting as this time of year is for us, it’s just another day for your dogs. However, keep in mind that the sudden change in routine, different people in the house, and the extra noise can upset and confuse your dog.
Make sure they still have their space and that it’s respected. If you have family and other children staying, try to make sure the dog isn’t bothered and overwhelmed when they take themselves off to their bed.
It might make a good picture to dress a dog up, but do try to spare a thought for them and make sure it isn’t upsetting them as the dog’s welfare comes first.
Smaller birds can get bullied off the feeders from the larger birds such as the local wood pigeons.
If you have a spare feeder fill it up with just mixed corn. It’s a cheap feed, the little birds won’t go for it and it will help divert the larger birds away from the feeders that feed the small songbirds.
Always be mindful of your tone of voice when dealing with your dog. A calm, assertive tone as an order will get you the best results. An excited or frantic tone will elevate your dogs mindset and behaviour, distracting them from listening.
A dog’s main way of learning is through repetition and association.
Typically, when you take your dog to the vets, it will be due to an issue with them or they are going in for their yearly jabs. This can easily result in the dogs developing fear and anti association towards the vets and can thus, make the experience very difficult.
A little tip to help curb this is to now and then pop into your local vets and walk them onto the scales (most vets have these in the waiting rooms), take a note of their weight which is always helpful, and then walk out with some praise and a treat after. This helps break any possible negative association they might develop.
Whatever command you choose, always keep the command the same. Be consistent, always make sure what you have instructed has been done (make sure it has followed through and actually sat if you have asked it to sit). Always think before you command i.e. if you don’t think the dog will achieve that command or you can’t manufacture the success then don’t ask it. Dogs hate to fail and the more a command doesn’t work the harder it will be to train into the animal.
Work together as a household and make sure you’re all treating your pet the same and all using the same commands and implementing the same rules. This will make it much easier for the dog to learn and understand his / her place within your family.
Always use a tick twister and never pull them off. All you need to do is keep twisting them once hooked until they pop off then tap against a piece of paper and look to see the tick wriggling around so you know the whole tick has been removed and the head not left in. Patience is key!
Typically you’ll always measure your dog behind their front legs around the waist to find the size of your dog for a harness.
A little trick to get this measurement is to take your lead, wrap it round the dog (as its their lead they should be relaxed to allow you to do this) then simply measure that length on the lead against a measuring tape.
You should feed your dog at regular feeding times.
It is normally best to have set feeding times for your dog as this will help manage their bowel movements and you’ll find it easier to spot any changes in their wellbeing should they suddenly start to refuse their food.
Scheduled meal times leads to a healthy appetite, meaning your dog is less likely to be fussy